HWG represents industry in a wide range of consumer product safety matters. The practice is led by John Hodges, who has more than thirty years of experience in consumer product safety issues.
We assist companies in evaluating safety issues and reporting to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and other relevant agencies. We represent clients in CPSC investigations and, where warranted, in developing and implementing corrective action programs and related communications. To the extent feasible, these strategies are tailored to reduce risk of reputational damage, business disruption, and litigation. We have often persuaded CPSC to resolve matters without a product recall.
We frequently address product safety on an international basis due to factors such as global sourcing, foreign safety criteria and reporting requirements (e.g., Health Canada), and recalls affecting multiple countries.
We provide defense in CPSC proceedings on whether companies have complied with reporting requirements under Section 15(b) of the Consumer Product Safety Act. Adverse findings on reporting expose companies to dramatically increased penalties since passage of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act.
We also represent companies on potential disclosures of information by CPSC. Disclosure, such as on CPSC’s Publicly Available Consumer Product Safety Information Database, can have a significant impact on a company.
We advise clients on requirements of the Federal Hazardous Substances Act, Poison Prevention Packaging Act, Flammable Fabrics Act, and state safety requirements. We participate in CPSC rulemaking and voluntary standards development, as well as provide advice on incorporating safety criteria into design and production and on internal controls to flag situations that might trigger reporting obligations.